How to Start a Side Hustle: 8 Actionable Steps
When starting any new venture, you need to cover your bases first so you don’t end up getting called out on the home stretch. Here are eight actionable steps to take when starting a side hustle so that you can score a home run after you hit the ground running.
1. Decide your level of commitment. Are you looking for something casual that you can do in your free time just for some extra fun money? Or do you need extra income to make ends meet? The reason for starting a side hustle can help determine which avenue you choose. For example, pet grooming can be a sporadic gig, but signing up to be a tutor requires consistent commitment.
2. Make sure it is legal and doesn’t conflict with current or past employment. There may be some non-compete clauses, convenience clauses, or nondisclosure agreements you signed with your current and past employers. And, don’t do anything that could be considered unethical or illegal since you’ll run the risk of getting fired . . . or worse.
3. Do the calculations to ensure the time and financial commitment makes sense (and cents). What startup costs are required to buy equipment, get trained, market your business, etc.? Do you have the time it takes to set up and run a business on top of your regular job hours and other personal commitments?
4. Decide your goals and set milestones to help you reach them. Is there a certain amount of income you want to bring in each month? How many customers do you need to get to reach your goal? How many hours per week do you have available to dedicate to running your hustle?
5. Market your services. This is a big part of running any business, and there are a lot of ways to do this. However, the most successful businesses utilize a variety of marketing methods simultaneously to get the best results. Marketing methods you should employ are cold calling, sending mailers, employing social media, and word of mouth. Plus, offer limited-time discounts for new clients and/or referrals.
6. Build (and keep) your clientele. All you need to do is win your first client before you gain confidence that you’ve got something viable to sell. But don’t stop after that, though! Keep growing your base until you reach your goal and work hard to keep the clients you’ve already won.
7. Ask for feedback. Your friends, mentors, business partners, industry insiders, customers, and even your gut instinct will inevitably have a lot to say about how to run your side hustle. Ask questions, listen, and seriously consider every bit of advice you get. That way, when it comes time to make any decision, you’ll have the information you need to make it a good one.
8. Don’t get fired from your day job. The point of a side hustle isn’t to replace your steady, reliable income—it’s to add to it. Keep your commitments to your boss, don’t use company resources or time, and continue to perform to the best of your capabilities.
Now that you know the basic steps of how to start a side hustle, it’s time to talk about some specific things you can do to get started, depending on the type of side hustle you want to pursue.
Here are just a couple of side hustle ideas that are in high demand right now.
How to Become a Tutor
Private tutoring has taken off recently, both at home in the US and abroad. One reason is that technology has become widespread and so easy to use for face-to-face, one-on-one instruction. The other reason is that parents want their children to have the best opportunities, but because of a lot of different limitations, they’re struggling to make it all happen.
Here is how to become a tutor:
- Nail down your niche. Being a general tutor is always an option, but specializing is often a better way to go. Some of the niches are a specific core subject, test prep, foreign language or ESL, or special needs.
- Market via social media, through word of mouth, and online services. There are numerous online sites that pair up tutors with students. But do your research. While some are legit and quite successful at making matches, others have so many wannabe tutors that the competitiveness is high, and the chance of getting chosen is low.
- Commit. We’re talking about kids here, and they need to be able to count on a consistent, caring tutor who will get them through their specified time of need.
Other similar paths to tutoring that you can take include becoming a voice or instrument instructor or even a substitute teacher (as many school districts have lowered the entry requirements because of the high need).
How to Host an Experience on Airbnb
Becoming an experienced host (whether online or in-person) is more simple than it perhaps sounds. The most well-known way to become a host is through Airbnb, where locals and tourists alike can book your specialty experience. The sky’s the limit on what kind of experience you could host, but try to come up with something unique, valuable, and fun.
1. Design your experience (following Airbnbs quality standards) and start the submission process.
2. Document what you’re offering, both in print and in video forms. Include lots of details about your expertise and how you can give your participants a positive and memorable experience.
3. Play with the price. Start low to gain business and get some reviews.
4. Submit everything to Airbnb, and you’ll know within 2-4 weeks if you’ve been approved.
5. Become familiar with the script and technology. Before you begin hosting, settle on what you’re going to say along with the camera setup, lighting, and sound details. Practice with your friends and family.
Other Side Hustle Ideas That Work
There are hundreds of different side hustles to do outside of your regular work hours, but some may be more viable than others. Sort through each idea and figure out the level of interest you have in doing it, how many people are seeking out the service, the time commitment it takes, and the potential income you can earn. Sure enough, there will be a side hustle you can do—and will love.
Here are some side hustle ideas that really work. Will one work for you?
Learn About Simple, Personal Loans
There may be a time or two in your life when an emergency comes up, and you need extra cash to hold you over for just a few days or a couple of weeks. Whether it’s to cover an overdue bill or an unexpected expense until your next paycheck comes in, there are options.
One of them is getting an online installment loan. If you want to learn more, visit Lift Credit now!